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does knowledge mean evil?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/10/2015 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 528 times Debate No: 78557
Debate Rounds (1)
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lets start with an empiricist approach to the question using a simple social experiment called the 'wallet experiment', a basic experiment in which we will make a person intentionally drop a wallet and note the surrounding persons reaction to this event.

we set the experience for adult subjects: half of the subjects kept the wallet while the other half warned the person, the results weren't surprising. we then set the same experience for children as subjects: all the subjects warned the person.

the intriguing thing was the name of the second half of the experiment: ' this experiment will show you that humans are born good' but the children did not act by good intention they only acted by protocol, by social standards parents force into the child's mind , they are not born good but they are born ignorant just like any other creature there is, they follow the social expectation of giving back ones lost possession since they are oblivious of the value the wallet can have, which means that the ignorance of children made them do the 'good' thing, so does it mean that the knowledge of people make them do 'evil' things?


No knowledge most assuredly does not mean evil in the strictest sense. The analogy you have given can be simply explained by a few things i'm going to mention and one thing you have already mentioned.

1. Children are guided and continuously told by their parents that you should be a good person. We are not born good or bad. When grow up influenced by those around us and once ones comes of age with the knowledge he or she will for the most part recognise the good vs the bad and
2. Adults/Parents are constantly under social and financial influence and pressure to raise their young, pay the mortgage, and save for a college intuition. All of these can have an influence on one taking the wallet, which is morally bad, yes (I can say I wouldn't) but in their minds it's for the good of their children. Nothing to do with knowledge
3. Taking points 1 and 2. You have the children being thought right from wrong (aka. giving back the wallet) but they don't have those ever non illusive pressure of financial troubles. Nothing to to with knowledge (bar the knowledge of looking financial pressure but nothing to do with gaining general knowledge).
4. Yes you are correct that many people do think when they are born they are born bad.. you will see below why is this not only an immoral thought among many other outrageously stupid religious doctrines but is evil at it's core.

Now that I hopefully covered that, I would like to divert the conversation to religion and why religion belongs to the period of human prehistory, meaning not having that much knowledge and the EVIL that came with it compared to the amount gained since those times.

Religion comes from the period of human prehistory where the bawling and fearful infancy of our species, and is a babyish attempt to meet our inescapable demand for knowledge (as well as for comfort, reassurance, and other infantile needs). Why do religious people look so forward to the annihilation of everyone? That seems to be so callous and inhuman.

Faith is the surrender of the mind; it"s the surrender of reason, it"s the surrender of the only thing that makes us different from other mammals. It"s our need to believe, and to surrender our skepticism and our reason, our yearning to discard that and put all our trust or faith in someone or something, that is the sinister thing to me. Of all the supposed virtues, faith must be the most overrated.

Let me explain:
Religion was the race's first (and worst) attempt to make sense of reality. It was the best the species could do at a time when we had no concept of physics, chemistry, biology or medicine. We did not know that we lived on a round planet, let alone that the said planet was in orbit in a minor and obscure solar system, which was also on the edge of an unimaginably vast cosmos that was exploding away from its original source of energy. We did not know that micro-organisms were so powerful and lived in our digestive systems in order to enable us to live, as well as mounting lethal attacks on us as parasites. We did not know of our close kinship with other animals. We believed that sprites, imps, demons, and djinns were hovering in the air about us. We imagined that thunder and lightning were portentous. It has taken us a long time to shrug off this heavy coat of ignorance and fear, and every time we do there are self-interested forces who want to compel us to put it back on again.

Divine permission given to people who think they have God is on their side enables actions that a normal, morally normal unbeliever would not contemplate. The mutilation of genitalia of children, who would do that if it wasn't decided that God wanted it? Morally normal and intelligent people find themselves saying fatuously wicked things when this subject comes up. The suicide bombing community is entirely faith based. The genital mutilation community is entirely faith based. Slavery is mandated by the Bible.

If God exists, we have to do what he says, if he doesn't, we can do what we like. Now just apply this in practice and theory. Is it not said of God's chosen people and is it not said to them by God in the Pentateuch that they can do exactly as they like to other people? They can enslave them, they can take their land, they can take their women, they can destroy all their young men, they can help themselves to all their virgins, they can do what anyone who had no sense of anything but their own rights would be able to do, but in this case with divine permission. Doesn't that make it somewhat more evil?

"If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed." --- Albert EinsteinA279;

"All thinking men are atheists" (Ernest Hemmingway).

In conclusion, it is exactly the opposite. Having very little knowledge is not the root of evil but as seen above can cause a lot of it. Human decency is not derived from religion. It precedes it. Take the risk of thinking for yourself, much more happiness, truth, beauty, and wisdom will come to you that way.
Thank you!
Debate Round No. 1
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by JamesTeranov 3 years ago
I thought I added this paragraph in.. I might of accidentally written over it.. No need to fret. Here is it.

Saying that, it is arguable that there is no evil entity in the world (of which I am inclines to agree with) but what the has created life and intelligent life have created evil be it greed, rape, murder and especially the outrageously immoral and evil religious doctrines of which I have mentioned in the debate.
Than again as time passed this prehistoric religious period, we gained the knowledge that a lot of the teachings of the bible, koran or whatever religion are immoral teachings and have done away with some of that but unfortunately some of it still lingers.

Once again, I Thank You :)
Posted by MagicAintReal 3 years ago
knowledge - facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.

evil - profound immorality, wickedness, and depravity, especially when regarded as a supernatural force.

Facts/info/skills acquired by a person are not synonymous with immorality/wickedness/depravity.
Therefore, knowledge does not mean evil.
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